Press Release

NASA Ames to Host Live Broadcast of Space Shuttle Launch

By SpaceRef Editor
November 13, 2009
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NASA Ames to Host Live Broadcast of Space Shuttle Launch
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News media and the public are invited to observe the live televised broadcast of the launch of STS-129, space shuttle Atlantis, on Monday, Nov. 16, 2009 in the Exploration Center at NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, Calif.

When Atlantis launches next week it will carry a NASA Universities Research Center (URC) proof of concept educational experiment developed by students of Texas Southern University (TSU) in Houston that will study how microbes grow in space. Jacob Cohen, director of the Ames Biology Office at NASA Ames, mentored the TSU Center for Bio-nanotechnology and Environmental Research (CEBR) faculty and students to design and conduct their experiment. NASA Ames provides technical monitoring and oversight for the CEBR.

Commander Charlie Hobaugh and his crew of five astronauts are now at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida for final launch preparations. Joining Hobaugh on STS-129 will be Pilot Barry Wilmore and Mission Specialists Leland Melvin, Randy Bresnik, Mike Foreman and Bobby Satcher. Wilmore, Satcher and Bresnik will be making their first trips to space. Nicole Stott, an astronaut who currently resides on the International Space Station, will return home with the Atlantis crew after living in space for more than two months.

As a graduate student in aeronautical engineering, Foreman conducted his thesis research at NASA Ames. Satcher, an orthopedic surgeon, completed internship and residency in orthopaedic surgery at University of California (UC) San Francisco in 2000 and a postdoctoral research fellowship at UC Berkeley in 1998. He has a physician’s and surgeon’s certificate; is trained to be a physician assistant supervisor by the Medical Board of California; and is a qualified California fluoroscopy X-Ray supervisor and operator. Satcher has been active in numerous community organizations, including the Big Brother for Youth at Risk Counseling Program under the Department of Corrections in San Francisco. Satcher now is sending updates about his training to his Twitter account. He can be followed at: http://www.twitter.com/Astro_Bones

STS-129 will be Atlantis’ 31st mission and the 31st shuttle flight dedicated to station assembly and maintenance. Atlantis and its crew will deliver two gyroscopes, equipment and EXPRESS Logistics Carrier 1 and 2 to store spare hardware on the exterior of the station to sustain operations after the shuttle fleet is retired. The carriers will be installed on the station’s truss, or backbone, and will hold two spare gyroscopes, two nitrogen tank assemblies, two pump modules, an ammonia tank assembly, a spare latching end effector for the station’s robotic arm, a spare trailing umbilical system for the Mobile Transporter and a high-pressure gas tank. The 11-day flight will include three spacewalks.

WHAT: An opportunity to watch the live televised broadcast of the launch of STS-129 space shuttle Atlantis, which will launch from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center, Fla., and will be televised live on NASA TV.

WHEN: The Exploration Center will open at 11 a.m. PST, Monday, Nov. 16, 2009, and remain open until 30 minutes after launch. The pre-launch program will begin at 11 a.m. PST. Launch is scheduled for 11:28 p.m. PST.

WHERE: NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, Exploration Center, located at the main gate, Moffett Field. To reach NASA Ames, take U.S. Highway 101 to the Moffett Field, NASA Parkway exit and drive east on Moffett Boulevard towards the main gate and bear right into the parking lot. The Exploration Center is located in the large white dome.

On launch day, a blog originating from Kennedy will update the countdown beginning at 6:30 a.m. PST. The blog is the definitive Internet source for information leading up to launch. During the mission, visitors to NASA’s shuttle Web site can read about the crew’s progress and watch the spacewalks live. As Atlantis’ flight wraps up, NASA will offer a blog detailing the spacecraft’s return to Earth.

For information about Atlantis’ crew and mission and to read online updates, including a webcast and a blog, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/shuttle

To watch Atlantis’ launch online, tune in to NASA Television, at: http://www.nasa.gov/ntv

SpaceRef staff editor.